Grungy post-apocalyptic shooter Metro Exodus will be exclusive to the Epic Games Store, at least in the case of the digital release. Given that 4A's grand rail journey across a decayed, mutated Russia was due out on February 15th - just over two weeks away - it's a bit of a surprise for anyone who had already pre-ordered on Steam. Those with outstanding pre-orders will receive Metro Exodus as expected on their store of choice, but publisher Deep Silver are sweetening the deal for Epic Store customers a little by cutting the US dollar price of the game a bit. Annoyingly, Euro and UK prices remain the same.
Epic seem increasingly serious about challenging Steam head-on, and have scored some major exclusivity deals already (including The Division 2 and upcoming Ubisoft games), but this move feels especially sudden and unexpected. Deep Silver state that "Any customer with an outstanding pre-order for Metro Exodus on PC through any digital retailer will receive their game as expected.", so hopefully nobody will be left in the lurch.
Update: Retail copies of the game will activate on the Epic Store.
The Epic Store is notable for offering publishers and developers a better revenue cut - 88%, instead of the 70% they'd get from Steam - and Deep Silver seem to be paying that forward, at least in America. The US dollar price has been lowered to $49.99, down from $59.99. Unfortunately the European price has seen no such reduction, staying at €59.99/£49.99, making the change seem especially unfair. For Americans who already ordered the game on Steam, the cheapest option may be to cancel one order and switch over to Epic.
Hopefully any bad vibes from this eleventh hour switch won't sour people on the game, which - according to Matt Castle in his video preview up there - is shaping up to be rather special. No longer restricted to the stuffy, mutant-infested Russian subway tunnels and surrounding, irradiated lands, the sequel is set across a series of semi-open-world zones. It's also a solo only game, so splitting players between Epic and Steam isn't running the risk of fracturing an online player-base
Metro Exodus launches on February 15th for £49.99/$49.99/€59.99, now exclusive to the Epic Store. Those pre-ordering get the soundtrack and a digital art-book as perks. The game is still available on Steam for £49.99/€59.99/$59.99, but there's a notification that sales will be discontinued "later today".